After the Autodist has been integrated into the software project by creating the 'distdir' and 'default' distribution, the source tree can be prepared for configuration and compilation (see Preparing source tree). However, the 'default' distribution should be used only as a development distribution. Usually it is used to prepare the raw source tree (such as a tree just checkout from CVS) for configuration and compilation. By default, the 'default' distribution cannot be packaged. However, if the software project is small (one distribution), it may be convenient to edit the 'default' distribution to be as the distribution that is packaged from the source tree. In software project where multiple distributions are created using the 'default' only as a development distribution is recommended. The real distributions should be defined as separate distributions.
Creating a new distribution is a simple process. Each distribution is placed in the 'distdir' and the file name of the distribution file is used to reference to it. By default, the distribution name is the file name of the distribution file. The actual distribution file is a simple text file with various directives that define the distribution.
If the 'default' distribution is used as a development distribution it might be desired to inherit some or all of the created distributions in it, so that development becomes possible with the 'default' distribution. Adding 'inherit' directive into the 'distdir/default' will inherit the specified distribution.